US20090260900A1 - Untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensor - Google Patents

Untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensor Download PDF

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Publication number
US20090260900A1
US20090260900A1 US12/104,392 US10439208A US2009260900A1 US 20090260900 A1 US20090260900 A1 US 20090260900A1 US 10439208 A US10439208 A US 10439208A US 2009260900 A1 US2009260900 A1 US 2009260900A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
stylus
electron
untethered
capacitive touch
source
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Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US12/104,392
Inventor
Michael J. Ure
Original Assignee
Ure Michael J
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Publication date
Application filed by Ure Michael J filed Critical Ure Michael J
Priority to US12/104,392 priority Critical patent/US20090260900A1/en
Priority claimed from PCT/US2008/071282 external-priority patent/WO2009029368A2/en
Publication of US20090260900A1 publication Critical patent/US20090260900A1/en
Abandoned legal-status Critical Current

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    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06FELECTRIC DIGITAL DATA PROCESSING
    • G06F3/00Input arrangements for transferring data to be processed into a form capable of being handled by the computer; Output arrangements for transferring data from processing unit to output unit, e.g. interface arrangements
    • G06F3/01Input arrangements or combined input and output arrangements for interaction between user and computer
    • G06F3/03Arrangements for converting the position or the displacement of a member into a coded form
    • G06F3/033Pointing devices displaced or positioned by the user, e.g. mice, trackballs, pens or joysticks; Accessories therefor
    • G06F3/0354Pointing devices displaced or positioned by the user, e.g. mice, trackballs, pens or joysticks; Accessories therefor with detection of 2D relative movements between the device, or an operating part thereof, and a plane or surface, e.g. 2D mice, trackballs, pens or pucks
    • G06F3/03545Pens or stylus

Abstract

An untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensors, described herein, allows for a single device like the iPhone to receive input via both finger touches and a stylus. Stylus input is more precise for various uses including, for example, text input and drawing input.

Description

  • The well-known Apple iPhone™ cellphone has a capacitive touch-screen interface designed to respond to finger touches but not to stylus input using, for example, a plastic stylus or the like. The Apple Newton™ personal digital assistant, on the other hand, had a pressure-sensitive touch-screen interface designed to respond to stylus input using a plastic stylus but not to finger touches.
  • An untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensors, described herein, allows for a single device like the iPhone to receive input via both linger touches and a stylus. Stylus input is more precise for various uses including, for example, text input and drawing input.
  • Other features and advantages will be understood upon reading and understanding the detailed description of exemplary embodiments, found herein below, in conjunction with reference to the drawings, a brief description of which is provided below.
  • FIG. 1 is a diagram of an untethered electrostatic pen or stylus.
  • FIG. 2 is a diagram of another untethered electrostatic pen or stylus.
  • There follows a more detailed description of the present invention. Those skilled in the art will realize that the following detailed description is illustrative only and is not intended to be in any way limiting. Other embodiments of the present invention will readily suggest themselves to such skilled persons having the benefit of this disclosure. Reference will now be made in detail to embodiments of the present invention as illustrated in the accompanying drawings. The same reference indicators will be used throughout the drawings and the following detailed description to refer to the same or like parts.
  • Referring now to FIG. 1, a diagram is shown of an untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensors. A sharp-tipped field-emission electrode is connected to a high voltage, (e.g., 100-1000V or more) produced by a DC-DC converter of a known type (for example, a Q Series ultra-miniature DC to HV DC converter available from EMCO High Voltage Corporation of Sutter Creek, Calif.). The DC-DC converter is supplied with power from a battery by a charger/regulator block. The charger/regulator block is connected to a charging connection mounted so as to be accessible from outside a housing. Application of a high voltage to the field-emission electrode causes an electron beam to be emitted. Adjacent to and possible surrounding the field-emission electrode is one or more electron beam focusing elements forming an electron beam lens. Various types of electron beam lens, such as the Einzel electron beam lens, are known in the art.
  • Also provided is a contact sensor. The function of the contact sensor is to sense when a tip of the untethered electrostatic pen/stylus has been brought into contact with or removed from contact with a surface, i.e., the surface of a capacitive touch sensor. During contact, the high voltage is applied to the field-emission electrode. During the absence of such contact, the high voltage is not applied to the field-emission electrode. The contact sensor may take any of various forms, including for example a microswitch, an optoelectronic switch, an oscillator and counter, an acoustic impedance sensor, etc.
  • In one embodiment, the untethered electrostatic pen/stylus may take a similar form as a USB drive, with the charging connector being a USB connector. The untethered electrostatic pen/stylus may therefore be easily charged from a PC or other line powered or battery powered electronic device. A snap-on cap may be provided that covers the field-emission electrode and surrounding structure.
  • Referring to FIG. 2, another embodiment of a untethered electrostatic pen/stylus is shown. In this embodiment, the field-emission electrode is replaced by an integrated circuit having formed thereon a field-emission array having hundreds, thousands, or even lens of thousands of individual micro-emitters. The micro-emitters may be formed within a vacuum envelope and emit through a sealed “window” that is relatively transparent to electron emission (e.g., a layer of silicon a few microns thick) as described for example in U.S. Pat. No. 6,714,625 entitled Lithography Device for Semiconductor Circuit Pattern Generation, issued Mar. 30, 2004, incorporated herein by reference.
  • The untethered electrostatic pen or stylus may incorporate the features of a USB drive or other similar devices.
  • Although embodiments of the present invention have been described in detail, it should be understood that various changes, substitutions and alternations can be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the inventions as defined by the appended claims.

Claims (7)

1. A pen or stylus for interacting with a capacitive touch sensor, comprising:
an elongated housing having a grip area to be gripped in a writing grip; and
an electron beam source within the elongated housing.
2. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the electron beam source comprises a field-emission electrode.
3. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the electron beam source comprises a field-emission array of micro-emitters.
4. The apparatus of claim 1, comprising an electron beam lens for focusing an electron beam produced by the electron beam source.
5. The apparatus of claim 1, comprising a rechargeable battery and a charging connector.
6. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the charging connector is a USB connector.
7. The apparatus of claim 1, comprising a contact switch responsive to contact of the pen/stylus for causing supply of a high voltage to the electron beam source to be interrupted during absence of contact.
US12/104,392 2008-04-16 2008-04-16 Untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensor Abandoned US20090260900A1 (en)

Priority Applications (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US12/104,392 US20090260900A1 (en) 2008-04-16 2008-04-16 Untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensor

Applications Claiming Priority (3)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US12/104,392 US20090260900A1 (en) 2008-04-16 2008-04-16 Untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensor
US12/671,626 US20110234623A1 (en) 2007-08-01 2008-07-27 Interface with and communication between mobile electronic devices
PCT/US2008/071282 WO2009029368A2 (en) 2007-08-01 2008-07-27 Interface with and communication between mobile electronic devices

Related Parent Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US12/040,769 Continuation US20090219250A1 (en) 2008-02-29 2008-02-29 Interface with and communication between mobile electronic devices

Related Child Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US12/671,626 Continuation US20110234623A1 (en) 2007-08-01 2008-07-27 Interface with and communication between mobile electronic devices

Publications (1)

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US20090260900A1 true US20090260900A1 (en) 2009-10-22

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US12/104,392 Abandoned US20090260900A1 (en) 2008-04-16 2008-04-16 Untethered electrostatic pen/stylus for use with capacitive touch sensor
US12/671,626 Abandoned US20110234623A1 (en) 2007-08-01 2008-07-27 Interface with and communication between mobile electronic devices

Family Applications After (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US12/671,626 Abandoned US20110234623A1 (en) 2007-08-01 2008-07-27 Interface with and communication between mobile electronic devices

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Cited By (11)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
KR101190518B1 (en) 2010-03-31 2012-10-16 제주대학교 산학협력단 A capacitive touch pen
US9389724B2 (en) 2010-09-09 2016-07-12 3M Innovative Properties Company Touch sensitive device with stylus support
US9460332B1 (en) * 2013-09-09 2016-10-04 Apple Inc. Capacitive fingerprint sensor including an electrostatic lens
US9576178B2 (en) 2012-05-18 2017-02-21 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensor packaging
US9697409B2 (en) 2013-09-10 2017-07-04 Apple Inc. Biometric sensor stack structure
US9740343B2 (en) 2012-04-13 2017-08-22 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensing array modulation
US9823785B2 (en) 2010-09-09 2017-11-21 3M Innovative Properties Company Touch sensitive device with stylus support
US9883822B2 (en) 2013-06-05 2018-02-06 Apple Inc. Biometric sensor chip having distributed sensor and control circuitry
US9984270B2 (en) 2013-08-05 2018-05-29 Apple Inc. Fingerprint sensor in an electronic device
US10019119B2 (en) 2010-09-09 2018-07-10 3M Innovative Properties Company Touch sensitive device with stylus support
US10296773B2 (en) 2013-09-09 2019-05-21 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensing array having electrical isolation

Families Citing this family (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
TWI376545B (en) * 2008-12-01 2012-11-11 Ind Tech Res Inst Cholesteric liquid crystal display devices with actuating thin-film driving elements
US9268379B2 (en) 2012-07-27 2016-02-23 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. Stylus and holder device associated therewith
JP6020251B2 (en) * 2013-02-26 2016-11-02 アイシン精機株式会社 Operation input confirmation device and vehicle door handle device
US10592012B2 (en) * 2018-02-07 2020-03-17 Mark Gordon Arnold Five-rectangle method for dispatching touch events from motion-disabled users

Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5369262A (en) * 1992-06-03 1994-11-29 Symbol Technologies, Inc. Electronic stylus type optical reader
US6714625B1 (en) * 1992-04-08 2004-03-30 Elm Technology Corporation Lithography device for semiconductor circuit pattern generation
US20060226225A1 (en) * 2005-04-08 2006-10-12 Ching-Horng Hsiao Multifunctional light beam pointer

Patent Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US6714625B1 (en) * 1992-04-08 2004-03-30 Elm Technology Corporation Lithography device for semiconductor circuit pattern generation
US5369262A (en) * 1992-06-03 1994-11-29 Symbol Technologies, Inc. Electronic stylus type optical reader
US20060226225A1 (en) * 2005-04-08 2006-10-12 Ching-Horng Hsiao Multifunctional light beam pointer

Cited By (17)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
KR101190518B1 (en) 2010-03-31 2012-10-16 제주대학교 산학협력단 A capacitive touch pen
US9823785B2 (en) 2010-09-09 2017-11-21 3M Innovative Properties Company Touch sensitive device with stylus support
US9389724B2 (en) 2010-09-09 2016-07-12 3M Innovative Properties Company Touch sensitive device with stylus support
US10019119B2 (en) 2010-09-09 2018-07-10 3M Innovative Properties Company Touch sensitive device with stylus support
US9740343B2 (en) 2012-04-13 2017-08-22 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensing array modulation
US9880675B2 (en) 2012-04-13 2018-01-30 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensing array modulation
US9576178B2 (en) 2012-05-18 2017-02-21 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensor packaging
US10007832B2 (en) 2012-05-18 2018-06-26 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensor packaging
US10423815B2 (en) 2012-05-18 2019-09-24 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensor packaging
US10007833B2 (en) 2012-05-18 2018-06-26 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensor packaging
US10783347B2 (en) 2012-05-18 2020-09-22 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensor packaging
US9883822B2 (en) 2013-06-05 2018-02-06 Apple Inc. Biometric sensor chip having distributed sensor and control circuitry
US9984270B2 (en) 2013-08-05 2018-05-29 Apple Inc. Fingerprint sensor in an electronic device
US10296773B2 (en) 2013-09-09 2019-05-21 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensing array having electrical isolation
US9460332B1 (en) * 2013-09-09 2016-10-04 Apple Inc. Capacitive fingerprint sensor including an electrostatic lens
US10628654B2 (en) 2013-09-09 2020-04-21 Apple Inc. Capacitive sensing array having electrical isolation
US9697409B2 (en) 2013-09-10 2017-07-04 Apple Inc. Biometric sensor stack structure

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